Will the Warriors prevail against a Panthers side that has been busy poaching its players for the last few years? Credit: NRL Photos Copyright: NRL Photos
Warriors v Storm
Melbourne's heavy contingent of New Zealand-born players – many of them now Test representatives – adds plenty of spice to this trans-Tasman rivalry. The Warriors always manage to lift against what has been one of the benchmark clubs of recent times.
Warriors fans still fondly remember their famous win over the Storm in the 2011 preliminary finals and always look forward to a chance to get one over their Kiwi brethren in the Storm outfit. Their record against the Storm is close to 50/50 in recent years, making this one to look forward to for Warriors faithful.
Warriors v Penrith
Warriors fans are getting a little bit sick of the Panthers poaching their players and staff. Not only has Gus Gould enticed former head coach Ivan Cleary out to western Sydney, but Warriors fans now have to endure the sight of two of their most valuable players – utility forward Lewis Brown and hardworking back rower Elijah Taylor – running around in Penrith colours.
Throw in a couple more former Warriors in Jeremy Latimore and Isaac John, and a couple of Kiwi Test players in Sika Manu and Dean Whare, and the Warriors will not be short on motivation when they meet the Panthers in 2014.
Warriors v Roosters
The Roosters crushed the Warriors' fairytale in 2002 in their debut grand final appearance but the one-time minnows now enjoy a dominant record over the tricolours, having won seven of the past 10 clashes. New Zealand Test hard men Jared Waerea-Hargreaves and Sonny Bill Williams will add plenty of motivation for the boys from across the ditch to continue to hammer home their dominance.
Add to that, as 2014's defending premiers, what better side to test yourself against? With a largely unchanged roster, the Roosters will be the benchmark next season – and Warriors fans would love nothing more than an early win over the reigning champs.
Check back on NRL.com on Wednesday for details of your team's schedule with the release of the 2014 NRL Draw.